Google debuts Gemini for Business as tech firms seek to monetize AI investments

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Google (GOOG, GOOGL) on Wednesday announced a new tier of its AI-capable enterprise productivity suite Gemini for Workspace. The move is another strike at rival Microsoft (MSFT) as the pair continue to battle for customers in the generative AI era.

Google’s new offering, known as Gemini Business, is an add-on for its Workspace suite of products which includes Gmail, Docs, Meet, Sheets, and Slides. At $20 per user per month, the Gemini for Business is $10 cheaper than Google’s existing Gemini Enterprise and Microsoft’s Copilot for Microsoft 365.

Gemini for Business adds Gemini to the Workspaces suite via email drafting assistance, data analysis, document creation, and more. It also includes access to a standalone version of Google’s Gemini via a custom landing page, which uses Google's Gemini Ultra large language model.

A series of servers powering Google's Gemini AI platform. (Image: Google)
A series of servers powering Google's Gemini AI platform. (Image: Google) (Google)

Gemini for Enterprise offers all of the same features that come along with Gemini for Business, as well as the ability to translate captions in Google Meet in more than 100 language pairs, and in the future, it will take meeting notes for users.

Neither Gemini for Business nor Gemini for Enterprise has a minimum user requirement, so both small and medium businesses and enterprises can sign up for either service. Google also says no user conversations with Gemini for Business or Gemini for Enterprise will be used for advertising, reviewed by humans, or used to train its algorithms.

In addition to Gemini for Business, Google also announced it’s rolling out its Google One AI Premium plan. The service adds Gemini to the company’s consumer productivity suite and features access to Google’s Gemini Advanced, which runs on the company’s Ultra 1.0 AI model. The company says it's also working on bringing Gemini for Workspace to education users in the coming weeks.

Google’s Gemini for Business and Gemini for Enterprise are direct competitors to Microsoft’s Copilot for Microsoft 365, which offers similar generative AI features through that company’s own productivity suite. But they aren’t the only offerings out there.

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Companies are increasingly adding generative AI capabilities to their business products as the hype surrounding the technology continues to carry into the first few months of 2024. Earlier this month, Salesforce-owned (CRM) Slack announced its new AI agent that will summarize threads and channels for users.

Wall Street is looking for tech firms to show that the fortunes they’ve plowed into AI technologies are starting to pay off. So far, Microsoft has managed to illustrate that point to investors, saying AI services contributed 6 percentage points of growth to Azure revenue in its latest quarter. That's an increase from 3 percentage points in the prior period. Revenue for the company's Intelligent Cloud business, which includes its Azure service, came in at $25.8 billion.

Both Google parent Alphabet and Microsoft shares have benefited handsomely from the AI craze. Shares of Alphabet have climbed 50% over the last 12 months, while Microsoft shares have jumped 53%.

Daniel Howley is the tech editor at Yahoo Finance. He's been covering the tech industry since 2011. You can follow him on Twitter @DanielHowley.

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